G-SYNC 101: Control Panel


G-SYNC Module

The G-SYNC module is a small chip that replaces the display’s standard internal scaler, and contains enough onboard memory to hold and process a single frame at a time.

The module exploits the vertical blanking interval (the span between the previous and next frame scan) to manipulate the display’s internal timings; performing G2G (gray to gray) overdrive calculations to prevent ghosting, and synchronizing the display’s refresh rate to the GPU’s render rate to eliminate tearing, along with the delayed frame delivery and adjoining stutter caused by traditional syncing methods.

G-SYNC Demo

The below Blur Busters Test UFO motion test pattern uses motion interpolation techniques to simulate the seamless framerate transitions G-SYNC provides within the refresh rate, when directly compared to standalone V-SYNC.

G-SYNC Activation

“Enable for full screen mode” (exclusive fullscreen functionality only) will automatically engage when a supported display is connected to the GPU. If G-SYNC behavior is suspect or non-functioning, untick the “Enable G-SYNC, G-SYNC Compatible” box, apply, re-tick, and apply.

Blur Buster's G-SYNC 101: Control Panel

G-SYNC Windowed Mode

“Enable for windowed and full screen mode” allows G-SYNC support for windowed and borderless windowed mode. This option was introduced in a 2015 driver update, and by manipulating the DWM (Desktop Windows Manager) framebuffer, enables G-SYNC’s VRR (variable refresh rate) to synchronize to the focused window’s render rate; unfocused windows remain at the desktop’s fixed refresh rate until focused on.

G-SYNC only functions on one window at a time, and thus any unfocused window that contains moving content will appear to stutter or slow down, a reason why a variety of non-gaming applications (popular web browsers among them) include predefined Nvidia profiles that disable G-SYNC support.

Note: this setting may require a game or system restart after application; the “G-SYNC Indicator” (Nvidia Control Panel > Display > G-SYNC Indicator) can be enabled to verify it is working as intended.

G-SYNC Preferred Refresh Rate

“Highest available” automatically engages when G-SYNC is enabled, and overrides the in-game refresh rate selector (if present), defaulting to the highest supported refresh rate of the display. This is useful for games that don’t include a selector, and ensures the display’s native refresh rate is utilized.

“Application-controlled” adheres to the desktop’s current refresh rate, or defers control to games that contain a refresh rate selector.

Note: this setting only applies to games being run in exclusive fullscreen mode. For games being run in borderless or windowed mode, the desktop dictates the refresh rate.

G-SYNC & V-SYNC

G-SYNC (GPU Synchronization) works on the same principle as double buffer V-SYNC; buffer A begins to render frame A, and upon completion, scans it to the display. Meanwhile, as buffer A finishes scanning its first frame, buffer B begins to render frame B, and upon completion, scans it to the display, repeat.

The primary difference between G-SYNC and V-SYNC is the method in which rendered frames are synchronized. With V-SYNC, the GPU’s render rate is synchronized to the fixed refresh rate of the display. With G-SYNC, the display’s VRR (variable refresh rate) is synchronized to the GPU’s render rate.

Upon its release, G-SYNC’s ability to fall back on fixed refresh rate V-SYNC behavior when exceeding the maximum refresh rate of the display was built-in and non-optional. A 2015 driver update later exposed the option.

This update led to recurring confusion, creating a misconception that G-SYNC and V-SYNC are entirely separate options. However, with G-SYNC enabled, the “Vertical sync” option in the control panel no longer acts as V-SYNC, and actually dictates whether, one, the G-SYNC module compensates for frametime variances output by the system (which prevents tearing at all times. G-SYNC + V-SYNC “Off” disables this behavior; see G-SYNC 101: Range), and two, whether G-SYNC falls back on fixed refresh rate V-SYNC behavior; if V-SYNC is “On,” G-SYNC will revert to V-SYNC behavior above its range, if V-SYNC is “Off,” G-SYNC will disable above its range, and tearing will begin display wide.

Within its range, G-SYNC is the only syncing method active, no matter the V-SYNC “On” or “Off” setting.

Currently, when G-SYNC is enabled, the control panel’s “Vertical sync” entry is automatically engaged to “Use the 3D application setting,” which defers V-SYNC fallback behavior and frametime compensation control to the in-game V-SYNC option. This can be manually overridden by changing the “Vertical sync” entry in the control panel to “Off,” “On,” or “Fast.”



1917 Comments For “G-SYNC 101”

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vizionblind
Member
vizionblind

Hello,

I have a 165 HZ monitor (the Gigabyte M32Q) and I mostly play FPS games and Open World Games. Just trying to understand if I need to do anything besides enablge gsync and vsync on in NVCP.
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0968QT6SS?ref=ppx_yo2_dt_b_product_details&th=1

roro13200
Member
roro13200

Hello
I have a 165hz gsync compatible screen, and an rtx 2060.
I mainly play fighting games which are capped at 60fps.
what are the parameters that you advise?
thank you and sorry for my english!

Dan_G_303
Member
Dan_G_303

Hi Jorim, thanks for this guide. I had a question – I have a 144 Hz G-sync compatible screen (AOC AG241QX) but prefer capping to 60 fps, as for some games this is near the max fps my PC can produce, and I prefer a consistent refresh rate no matter the content, rather than running some games at 60 fps and less demanding games at higher fps (this also keeps me from spending too much money on a high end GPU as I’m not always chasing 144 fps !). I have refresh rate in Windows display settings set to 60 Hz too so that just normal desktop use is also consistent.

As far as I understand, for exclusive fullscreen games the Windows refresh rate setting is overwritten and the screen’s max refresh rate is used instead (144 Hz in my case) so that any fps cap ~3fps or more under the screen’s refresh rate will do the job of keeping the fps within the G-SYNC range (for my screen this would be a fps cap anywhere between 141-30 fps and I prefer to set it to 60fps).

However – for games that don’t have proper exclusive fullscreen (or those where borderless fullscreen is more convenient) the refresh rate seems to stick to the Windows display setting (60 Hz in my case). For these games should the fps limit be 57fps, or would 60fps still work?

Also for information – on my screen there appears to not be any built in hardware setting to set the refresh rate (i.e. in the screen’s OSD) – otherwise that would solve it.

Thanks.

SkaKunK
Member
SkaKunK

Hi jorimt. I am Spanish. I hope you understand me well.

I recently bought a LG C1 OLED 120Hz Gsync compatible TV and a nvidia 3060ti. My problem is that I have micro stuttering and it seems strange to me because while the Afterburner statistics say that I am playing for example at a constant 60fps 16.6, in the GSYNC menu of the TV I can see that the fps vary a lot and all the time; 63,70,57 , 52.

In some games they vary less than in others. I’m confused. I thought they would vary from 59 to 60 at most. How can it be that on the PC it tells me a constant 60fps 16.6ms and on the TV it doesn’t? I just activate vertical sync in the game (without GSYNC) and RTSS limiter at 60fps and I feel it better and smooth.

What could be the problem?. Thanks for advance 🙂

gsyncnoob2
Member
gsyncnoob2

Hello @jorimit,

Thanks for putting those together really helpful!

I used G+VSYNC in NVCP and in game(world of tanks) fps_max @141, however I noticed that the fps is staying at 124-125hz on my 144hz monitor, if I change fps_max to 144, it stables at 143-144hz, I am kinda new to gsync, but is it the expected behavior? I thought this setup should stay at 144hz.

Thanks!

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